The next several weeks (March 23- April 10, approximately) we will revisit the genre of poetry with our ultimate goal being to produce an ‘explication’ paper. Read the assignments attached here as “Intro2LitPoetry” parts one and two and “Poems for Further Reading”. Next, find a poem in “Poems for Further Reading” Make sure it is one that moves or engages you in some important way. You can choose a poem not in the textbook, but if you do so make sure you get it approved by me.
Second, you will explain why you are attracted to the poem in the Discussion Board entitled, “My Poem and Why I Like It”. Please do not choose Robert Frost’s “Snowy Evening” or “The Road Less Travelled”. I am sorry, but I have just read too many student explications of these poems. (BTW, he is not a nice, white-haired grandfather type. He only appears to be. He is wonderfully wicked.) Pick a poem and poet that is new and fresh to you. Get out of your comfort zone…if you dare.
Next, look at the discussion responses from two of your classmates, read their poems and comment on their poem choices. Please include the textbook page number and the title of the poem correctly punctuated with quotation marks in your discussion thread. For example, here is a poem by Seamus Heaney, “Digging”. We will be looking at many poems in the textbook and using the tools we learn about in the textbook to analyze the poem you have chosen to explicate.
Last, each chapter in the textbook ends with a checklist. You will analyze your chosen poem using that checklist. I will provide screencasts of a sample poem that I have chosen that I will model for you. I will have the first week or two of the checklist assignments up and available on or before March 23. I will have deadlines for each assignment and I will also have a course document on what I expect in your completed explication paper.
To recap: we will be working on poetry, you will choose your own poem, you will respond in a discussion board post indicating which poem you will be using as well as responding to what others have chosen, you will complete the textbook checklists as you go, those checklists will help you get deep into your chosen poem, and you will write an explication paper as a final product that demonstrates your mad skills. Got it?
I will follow your progress, I will have screencasts over a poem of my own choosing, I will help you use the tools in the checklists, I will provide lots of extra text to help you, and I will show you what I want you to do in an explication paper. OK, let’s go.
Find a poem in the scanned textbook pages or in “Poems for Further Reading” chapter that moves or engages you in some important way. This is the poem you will use in completing the checklists and for writing your explication. Explain as specifically as you can why you are attracted to this poem in your Discussion Board response. Please do not choose Robert Frost’s “Snowy Evening” or “Road Less Traveled”. I am sorry, but I have just read too many student explications of these poems. Pick a poem and poet that is new and fresh to you. Also, look at the discussion responses from two of your classmates and comment on their poem choices.
General guidelines for discussion boards:
- Read other postings before writing yours and avoid posting responses that simply repeat what someone else has already said. That way you can contribute to the discussion and build upon others’ ideas.
- Give your posting an informative or creative title; in other words, avoid titles like “My Post.” This will help everyone in the class follow discussions and find relevant postings.
- Give a thoughtful, thorough, and original response showing your intellectual engagement with the text(s).
- Avoid summarizing. It’s fine to provide a bit of context for your response if need, but bear in mind that we’ve all read the same stuff.
- Show engagement with the ideas expressed by others’ postings.
- Be respectful in all online postings. You are free to disagree with other students and with me – just be sure to do so in a way that seeks to persuade.
- Postings should be written with reasonable care (avoid typos, texting shorthand, etc.)
Please include the textbook page number and the title of the poem correctly punctuated with quotation marks in your discussion thread.